George: We both received review copies of the original Disney Channel movie, Disney Descendants. I was eager to watch it, because I thought it had a pretty neat concept and I wanted to see where the story would go. I never saw Teen Beach, but Lemonade Mouth surprised me for its content and the very well-crafted songs. How would Disney Descendants hold up?
Jeff: Right off the bat, I have to tell you that I loved it. It was better than most original Disney Channel films (but not as good as Teen Beach Movie). However, the high concept got me on board right away, and despite its cheesiness, I kind of loved it right out of the gate.
George: Like we mentioned on our more rambling review on Communicore Weekly, Disney really went over the top and tried for camp. In some cases they succeeded, and in other cases, well, they didn’t. To me, seeing a film about the kids of some of Disney’s most reprehensible and amazing villains sounds really cool. Especially when you find out that all of the villains have been imprisoned on an island and their magic has been blocked. Like how Kristin Bell blocked us on Facebook.
Jeff: But unlike us getting around Ms. Bell’s block, the descendants (you see what they did there?) of these Disney villains have managed to get unblocked, and invited to the prep school where all the children of Disney princes and princesses go. Of course, because they are villains, they come with a plan to help free their parents.
George: There are several musical numbers in Disney Descendants, and the one with Kristin Chenoweth seemed to stand out. The rest of the songs are kind of meaningless and don’t add much. When we look at the villains, themselves, the casting was fairly ingenious, with Kathy Najimy providing a hysterical Evil Queen. The descendants, though, seem to be the atypical Disney stars that are all polish and cuteness. But that doesn’t distract too much from the film.
Jeff: See, I felt the opposite. Aside from the “Be Our Guest” rehash, I loved the music. I thought it fit quite well for the film, and was totally had a Disney Channel movie vibe to it. Of course, Chenoweth’s stole the show, but the rest weren’t nearly as bad as George says. He just hates fun, and is rotten to the core. Which, by the way, if I have to hear someone say one more time…
George: It’s almost like the Descendants were faking the evil? But sometimes, I do hate fun. My wife wanted me to add that she really did like the film and felt that it was a great movie for the intended audience. Which happens to not be me. There were some really odd extras, which didn’t add to the disc in any way, but, again, were focused on the intended audience. The Emoji story was pretty cute when it started and then just got #boring.
Jeff: Stop trying to make emoji storytelling a thing. It’s never going to happen. There was also a dance rehearsal extra for one of the sequences. Much like the Teen Beach 2 DVD, this was kind of lackluster on the extras, and these rehearsal things are just kind of boring to watch. However, to me, the movie makes up for it. And apparently I AM its intended audience.
George: Overall, I think that tweens (and Jeff Heimbuch) are really going to like Disney Descendants. It looks like it’s leading into a very strange computer-animated series that’s going to take place after the film. But don’t hold me to that. If my defense, it wasn’t that I didn’t enjoy the film, I think I was just expecting a little more. It was very predictable and I found myself second-guessing every move that the characters made.
Jeff: Like I said, George hates fun.
Did you get a chance to see Disney Descendants? What did you think about the movie?